DONUT 1: The Mavs' "best-in-the-NBA'' bench? Denver outscored Dallas 40-19.
The Mavs' "veteran control''? Denver swiped 16 balls and Dallas committed 21 turnovers. (And nine in the fourth! Again!)
The Mavs' "closers''? In the fourth quarter – which began 79-all – Dirk and Jet combined to shoot 0-of-8 from the floor and 1-of-2 from the line for a grand total of one point.
Because if it is, their essence as a team is nothing close to what we thought, nothing close to what they thought.
DONUT 2: Because I've put myself in charge of the Dallas Sports Social Scene … and because maybe you still care a little bit about the Dallas Cowboys, here goes:
Friday night. At "Lemon Bar'' in West Village. Tony Romo with a bunch of friends. And Miles Austin with a bunch of friends. Romo yukking it up. Miles wheezing and sneezing so badly that one of The 75-Member Staff actually asked him if he is too sick to play Sunday night against the Packers.
Austin's playing … and he's not as unhealthy as Romo, obviously … but don't let Miles Austin breathe on you right now.
DONUT 3: Props to the Mavs players for their terrific PR con job on all of us regarding their "support'' of Carmelo Anthony during this "will-he-or-won't-he'' time.
A sampling, from Jason Terry: "I know it's definitely tough and it's a minor distraction, but … They seem to be handling it well, though. … ‘Melo is playing well, just as he was before all this started … He's with it. The thing about Melo is he's a professional. Anytime he laces them up, he's going to go hard.''
Well, really … not much of that is true. Oh, it worked out Saturday at the AAC, and Denver gets credit for "lacing them up'' and winning on the road on the second night of a b2b. (And Dallas gets all sorts of discredit for the outcome.)
And ‘Melo? Hey, with 27 points, that's as well and as hard as he's played against the Mavs since the playoff battle between the two clubs.
But big picture? Smart of Jet and others who've been asked to make it sound like the Dallas locker room "understands'' … but they don't.
And it this were a Mavs player creating this sort of me-first turmoil? They wouldn't understand that, either.
DONUT 4: I'm not sure I understand the "weak-schedule'' argument being used against TCU. For one thing, some of the other teams in the top-10 mix coming into the weekend include Boise State and Oregon and Utah.. So today, TCU and Boise State and Oregon and Utah? That's what football powers look like today. (And if you watch, you know what "traditional football powers'' Texas, Oklahoma, Alabama and many others do and fail to do in any given week.)
And for another thing – assuming some of those bitching might be from places like Nebraska or Oklahoma or Ohio State … Hey, you big boys have for the last 60 years been making a powerhouse living off of crushing non-conference opponents to begin seasons in order to establish yourselves.
So now that TCU is crushing other top-10 teams, the Horned Frogs' schedule is lacking?
DONUT 5: The Mavs get another of these "double-headers'' next week when it plays consecutive games against New Orleans … First one on Nov. 15 here, then two nights later in the Crescent City.
Hopefully, Chris Paul has cooled off a bit since then. He is THE reason the Hornets are off to a 6-0 start … he is in the process of reminding everyone that MVP candidates don't have to be giants … and fortunately for the Hornets, CP3 is doing a heckuva job putting his "will-he-or-won't-he'' status on the back shelf.
Unlike some dudes we know.
DONUT 6: Chris Bosh continues to prove me right in my assertion that NBA observers are terribly misguided in somehow thinking as if Miami "assembled three superstars.''
They kept one in Wade – and they get credit for that.
They acquired one in LeBron – and even if Pat Riley laid down some slimy groundwork in advance of when it was legal to do so, they got away with that.
But Chris Bosh? He's not on that level. And he continues to prove that now that he's with the Heat, a team top-heavy in stars but maybe needing somebody to do other stuff like, you know, rebounding.
In a loss to the aforementioned Hornets – they were undefeated, remember, so it was a big game – Bosh showed up and pulled down one rebound.
For the entire game.
DONUT 7: So here comes the news that the Clippers want to trade point guard Baron Davis. … and here comes my research into the situation:
"If I was them, I'd give him away,'' one NBA personnel man tells me.
"You mean, for nothing, if that was possible?'' I say.
"Yes, I mean I'd give him away and make an example of him,'' the insider says. "He's had one impactful handful of NBA days in his whole life – against Dallas in the 2007 Playoffs. That's all he's ever done – and he got his big contract from that and the next thing you know he wants to spend all this time with a (movie) production company or whatever. He gives them nothing. They should give him away for nothing.''
That's not really practical – Davis is kinda hurt and also has three years and $41.8 million left on that clownish contract – but the point is made.
My personnel director thinks the Clippers are better off with Baron being hurt and not showing up to the gym.
DONUT 8: "You've gotta give them credit; they wanted this more than we did. That's what it boils down to." - Shawn Marion.
Is The Matrix just uttering those words because they fit nicely into a cliché? Or is that what really happened? Because if it's the latter, that's inexcusable.
DONUT 9: I cannot express strongly enough how much I disagree, philosophically, with Carlisle's position on playing SmallBall as a response to the other team playing SmallBall.
Rick's pregame statement on the strategy:
"We have to try to keep our length in the game as much as we can,'' he said when reflecting on competing with a Denver lineup missing a bunch of bigs. "That's one of our real defining attributes. But, there are times when sizing down makes sense. We looked at it a little bit the first game. Anything's in play.''
As a general rule?
I'm big. You're small. I should be dictating to you.
When Denver goes small, it is highly athletic. Why try to match"athletic small'' with "less athletic small''?
It's a football philosophy that runs my brain here: If your defense drops into coverage with extra DB's, I'm running the ball. But more than that: If your defense puts eight men in the box, and I have Emmitt, Johnston, Erik Williams and Larry Allen?
I'm still running the ball.
DONUT 10: Should be a high-profile blast Monday night at the AAC with Celtics-at-Mavs, and MavCowTickets has a way to get you in … with good seats cheap … or great seats cheap. We've arranged with our man Ryan to offer up several tickets in all levels at or below face value! Example: There are few lowers at or below $50 each, and there are uppers at or below $9 each. Guys, that beats going to the big outlets – because Ryan won't chart you service fees.
Please check it!
DONUT 11: Old chum John Hollinger writes in an ESPN Insider article called "Power points: Best of the new era" that the new generation of
point guards includes certain traits.
"Three young guns – Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook and John Wall -- are moving rapidly up the ranks. And what's unusual about this group is that they play the position much differently than the previous generations. … These guys? Raw, unadulterated power. With awesome combinations of size and strength, they're among the best finishers in basketball despite playing the point. They're not great shooters and it doesn't matter. They don't have great court vision (though Wall has shown a lot of potential as a distributor; more on that below). That doesn't matter, either. In today's NBA, where the ability to beat opponents off the dribble is king and perimeter defenders can't use their hands, burst and power are at a premium.''
Now, Hollinger doesn't mention Roddy B (of course). But if that "raw'' skill is at a "premium'' … doesn't Beaubois fit the profile?
Yeah, yeah. Too early. And he might wanna get out of that boot first. But I will promise you that there are more than a few NBA personnel people who think Beauboisis destined to be a Westbrook-type player. In fact, there are a couple of people in the Mavs organization who still think Carlisle erred last year in keeping a lid on Roddy B, their thinking that Beaubois could've been Westbrook-like last year.
My view? I'm sticking with what I've said all along about Roddy B (and I think we saw evidence of this again Saturday night): Beaubois represents the Mavs' best chance of becoming better than they've been. And at this stage, it doesn't even matter where he plays … just when.
DONUT 12: Yahoo is probably stretching is when it lists Dirk among the "leading'' NBA players on Twitter. He's a leading NBA player, but … the rest of it is a building process.
At least he's not using Social Media to discuss whether or not NBA players "look like cancer patients.''
DONUT 13: Big day for us on Monday. You're gonna want to get registered PDQ on DB.com Boards! Trust me!